ERIC Number: EJ1033228
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Reference Count: 11
Game-Based Assessments: A Promising Way to Create Idiographic Perspectives
Walker, A. Adrienne; Engelhard, George, Jr.
Measurement: Interdisciplinary Research and Perspectives, v12 n1-2 p57-61 2014
"Game-Based Assessments: A Promising Way to Create Idiographic Perspectives" (Adrienne Walker and George Englehard) comments on: "How Task Features Impact Evidence from Assessments Embedded in Simulations and Games" by Russell G. Almond, Yoon Jeon Kim, Gertrudes Velasquez, and Valerie J. Shute. Here, Walker and Englehard write that they believe assessments embedded within simulations and games represent the cutting edge of next generation assessments and that Almond, Kim, Velasquez, and Shute (Focus article) suggest that a careful consideration of the principles of evidence-centered assessment design can improve game-based assessments. Student information can be gathered, analyzed, and systematically used to substantiate claims and inferences about student academic performance in ways that are fun, engaging, and perhaps even unknown to the students who are being assessed. The purpose of the Focus article is to describe how game "tasks" can be modified so that certain psychometric properties, such as task difficulty and task discrimination, can be identified to support the construct validity of game-based assessments. One of the key ideas of the Focus article is the potential of computerized assessments to collect and, therefore, potentially measure important aspects of student achievement that cannot be easily measured by traditional assessment formats. For example, constructs such as student creativity and persistence are not typically measured in traditional assessments. However, within the format of a game-based assessment, where vast amounts of data on the student are recorded, it is conceivable to measure both cognitive and affective student characteristics. Obstacles regarding the appropriate measurement of cognitive and affective constructs for game-based assessment exist, and they can be addressed to ensure valid measurement of student achievement. Walker and Englehard note that the potential to collect data on more than one dimension of student performance has exciting implications for assessment practice. This commentary suggests that game-based assessments using evidence-centered design provide an opportunity to focus on students as multidimensional individuals acting within a particular context. A more complex and nuanced picture of a student's academic achievement may be drawn from information collected with computerized game-based assessment. Further, it suggests that the pursuit of construct validation for measuring student performance can be theoretically grounded in both nomothetic and idiographic scientific inquiry.
Descriptors: Educational Games, Task Analysis, Models, Educational Assessment, Design, Evidence, Academic Achievement, Psychometrics, Construct Validity, Computer Uses in Education, Creativity, Academic Persistence, Data Collection, Measurement Techniques
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
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